Legion: Chapter 13

oliver

Really, Farouk, I’m just wondering: is this trip going anywhere?

The weirdness that’s part of the package continues in Legion’s next episode, “Chapter 13.” I’m still sort of surprised that a show that seems to pride itself on being surreal has such normal episode titles. Maybe they needed a token bit of sanity to give their writers a break.

At the end of last episode, Lennie made a surprise appearance, turning up at Division Three with no explanation. Given that she’s been with the Shadow King, and how much damage he’s wrought, they’re not taking her return at face value. They are keeping her locked in a really odd interrogation room, that seems to be upside down, with the table and chairs on the ceiling. The first bit of the show is Agent Clark demanding to know how she is back and whose body she’s in. Lennie continues to be uncooperative and vague and demands to see David over and over again. All she’ll talk about is that she was a victim, kidnapped by the Shadow King, and her grandmother getting her drunk when she was a kid. She makes some vague warnings about the end of the world coming. Clark has plans for her future, and they are not pleasant.

Oliver is driving through the desert, with Farouk riding in the back seat, as they discuss retrieving Farouk’s body. Oliver is less than thrilled with the idea of handling an actual body, and Farouk doesn’t care about Oliver’s qualms. Finally, they get there, Oliver digs a lot, and Farouk sits by and drinks tea. When Oliver has difficulty getting the coffin out of the ground, Farouk finally steps in and uses his powers. There is a brief flashback to the weird musical assault on Division Three, and we see why they were there finally.

Ptonomy is up next, trying to get through to Lennie. He goes on a long talk about the time it takes images to hit the eye meaning there’s no such thing as the present. His total recall trick proves to be wrong about one thing with Lennie, which disturbs him a lot and leads to yet another demand for her to tell whose body she’s in. Once again, she doesn’t say, and gives more warnings about the Shadow King coming. He tries to use his power to get answers from Lennie, but nothing goes as planned. Oddly, despite this scene with her, he is listed as “credit only” on IMDB for this episode. I think they missed something.

There’s another of those lectures about coincidence versus conspiracy, with Oliver once again lecturing some little kid. Is this supposed to be an early David? Because things weren’t weird enough, we’re still in the desert, but Oliver and Farouk are watching miners come up out of a hole in the ground to buy things from “Dead Sea Donuts,” which is some kind of early meal truck but it’s shaped like a submarine on wheels. Looking like that, I would have thought sandwiches would be a better thing to sell, but I guess that would make too much sense. Oliver and Farouk debate morality and killing people for a while, then follow the sub when it drives off.

Lennie finally gets to see David. He’s nicer to her than the others have been, but still has a lot of questions for her. David asks her about the Shadow King’s body, and, like everyone else, whose she is in, but she continues to be evasive. Lennie claims she knows very little about what the King is up to, and compares her and Oliver’s captivity to being kept in a box and only brought out to play with when he felt like it. She admits she finds the one change in her that others have noticed to be kind of strange, but doesn’t know why it’s different.

Oliver threatens to kill the King, who seems very amused by the idea. They follow the sub back to a very rural place that looks kind of like a gas station/general store, except that it has troops in black guarding it. Head to toe black is just mean to soldiers in the desert. Things cut back and forth between David trying to get answers from Lennie and the Oliver/Farouk combo attacking the building, killing the various guards. Lennie speculates that the Shadow King found her old body (I guess he’s collecting corpses?) as the scenes keep cutting back and forth. Finally, David figures out where the body Lennie is in came from, and recoils in horror. I don’t blame him. It’s a really twisted idea, and is going to make sure at least some of the people never forgive the Shadow King.

What I liked: OK, twisted as it was, the secret behind the body was well done. There’s even a reason for the King to have done it besides screwing with David. I’d call it a trial run for something. The change in Lennie everyone commented on was a subtle clue and a nicely done one. Oliver threatening to kill the King was the first hint we’ve had in a long time that he’s not just going along with the bad guy, which was nice to see.

What I didn’t: The show is just trying too hard to be weird a lot of the time, and sometimes it’s clever, but a lot of the time not. I’m getting a bit sick of some of their weirdness. If nothing else, they could have explained why the room they were keeping Lennie in was so damn peculiar.

It was a decent episode with some actual plot developments. I’ll give it a 3 out of 5. I’m sticking out this season, but I may well quit if there’s a third coming.

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